For the last five years Downers Grove South's football team thrived with a Williams leading the offense at running back.
The Mustangs plan to enjoy the sixth and final season of the family dynasty with senior Josh Williams younger brother of Scottie, another three-year starter set to match last year's 1,000-yard rushing effort.
"He looks very good," said Downers South coach John Belskis. "Even after three years he still amazes you. He may be the best I've seen here at that position."
Experience fills the field for the Mustangs highlighted by a second third-year starter in offensive tackle Shane Companey. He's one of 12 returning starters, including seven on defense.
Injuries decimated Downers South last season: nine starters even missed one game. But Williams is healthy heading into his senior campaign, as is defensive lineman Josh Aldrin, who missed last year with a torn ACL.
With seniors Aldrin, Chris Eberhart and Jeremy Ulrich the defensive line should be a strength of the defense. Linebacker Lance Leong and defensive back Danny Leach, both returning starters, lead a unit that posted four shutouts last season in the West Suburban Gold.
"We have enough experience on that side of the ball that we should be OK," Belskis said.
While the offense will heavily feature Williams and the running game, the Mustangs remain potent with the pass. Senior quarterback A.J. Simoncelli, who came up to varsity as a sophomore, is back. Receiver Marco Scalzetti also returns after catching a pair of touchdown passes last season against Leyden.
A typically solid Downers South squad should be primed for a 15th straight playoff season and a run at a repeat Gold championship.
"Hopefully we got all the injuries out of our system last season," Belskis said. "We don't have any Division I players, but we're also not hiding anyone out there."
Coach: John Belskis (23rd year, 187-55).
2010 record: 7-3, 6-0, first West Suburban Gold.
Top players: Josh Williams (RB, 5-9, 175, sr.); A.J. Simoncelli (QB, 6-0, 165, sr.); Shane Companey (OL, 6-3, 280, sr.); Danny Leach (DB, 5-11, 175, sr.); Lance Leong (LB, 6-0, 200, sr.); Josh Aldrin (DL, 5-10, 260, sr.); Scott Daly (TE, 6-4, 240, sr.); Marco Scalzetti (WR, 5-9, 165, sr.); Mark Muench (OL, 6-3, 225, sr.); Tim Lieb (OL, 5-11, 240, sr.); John Wauer (DB, 6-0, 185, jr.); Chris Eberhart (DL, 6-0, 260, sr.); Leo Arvanitakis (LB, 5-11, 200, sr.); Melvin Saulsberry (LB, 6-0, 190, sr.).
Fri, Aug 26 South Elgin 7:30 p.m.
Fri, Sep 2 @ Lyons 7:30 p.m.
Fri, Sep 9 Morton 7:30 p.m.
Fri, Sep 16 @ Leyden 7:30 p.m.
Fri, Sep 23 Downers North 7:30 p.m.
Fri, Sep 30 @ Willowbrook 7:30 p.m.
Fri, Oct 7 Proviso East 7:30 p.m.
Fri, Oct 14 Hinsdale South 7:30 p.m.
Fri, Oct 21 @ Addison Trail 7:30 p.m.